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Morcellators Still Used by Some Hysterectomy Surgeons

September 25, 2014 — Some surgeons are still using power morcellators for hysterectomies and fibroid surgery despite clear warnings from the FDA, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Reporters talked to one Dallas-based surgeon who said he now asks his patients to sign a consent form before undergoing morcellation. Earlier this year, the FDA warned against using morcellators because they can spread undiagnosed uterine cancer.

The FDA estimates that 1 in 350 women who has a hysterectomy or fibroid surgery also has cancer. However, the surgeon says, “We tell them verbally that we don’t think those numbers are correct.”

No one is keeping track of how many surgeons are still using power morcellators on their patients. A few hospitals have restricted their use, including Boston’s Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Philadelphia’s Temple University Hospital. Some insurance companies in those areas have dropped coverage. The largest manufacturer of power morcellators, Johnson & Johnson, stopped selling all products in July.

Gynecologists are now discussing whether the benefits of power morcellation justify the risks. Benefits include less bleeding, less risk of infection, faster healing time, and faster operations. However, these benefits are no better than other minimally-invasive techniques.

The WSJ was one of the first publications to report on the controversy. Two months before the FDA warning, they reported that the top surgeon at Temple University Hospital was restricting the use of power morcellators to patients with very large fibroids — and only in a protective surgical bag. Unfortunately, even with a protective bag, power morcellators can still leave behind cancerous tissue.

Do I have a Morcellator Lawsuit?

The Schmidt Firm, PLLC is currently accepting power morcellator induced injury cases in all 50 states. If you or somebody you know has been diagnosed with uterine sarcoma or leiomyosarcoma (LMS), you should contact our lawyers immediately for a free case consultation. Please use the form below to contact our Defective Medical Device Litigation Group or call toll free 24 hours a day at (866) 920-0753.

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